Roll Call: Latest News on Capitol Hill, Congress, Politics and Elections
March 3, 2015

Battle Between Fossil Fuel and Renewables is Heating Up

According to the latest U.S. Energy Information Administration monthly energy review, Americans still rely more on coal than renewables as an energy source.

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But the “battle over fossil fuel and renewable energy” is just starting to heat up, according to a recent report in The Washington Post.

A campaign to curtail state climate mandates — “despite its backing from powerful groups such as Americans for Prosperity — has run into a surprising roadblock: the growing political clout of renewable-energy interests, even in rock-ribbed Republican states such as Kansas.”

“The stage has been set for what one lobbyist called ‘trench warfare’ as moneyed interests on both sides wrestle over some of the strongest regulations for promoting renewable energy.

“The coalition campaigns have achieved only symbolic victories in a few states. Nonbinding resolutions critical of the EPA power plant proposals have been approved in Alabama, Georgia, Nebraska, West Virginia and Wyoming. Three other states — Louisiana, Missouri and Ohio — are weighing legislation similar to the ALEC model.”

The biggest battle could take place in Kansas, home to Koch industries. “But the strong winds that blow across Kansas have carried new interest groups into the state. Kansas ranks sixth in the country in wind output, which jumped by a third last year and equaled 19 percent of the state’s electricity, the EIA says.”

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